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Cooking up Smiles..Across the Miles


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Instant Pot Beetroot (Beets) Pasta..Stovetop recipe included.

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Hello everyone. Thanks for sticking around. I know it has been a (very, very) long time since my last post. Life got a little too busy for me after my second kid was born but I have no complains. I know these days won’t come back and I am cherishing each and every moment of it. 🙂

Speaking of not coming back, there is definitely something I truly wish wouldn’t come back ever again…COVID -19. The novel Coronavirus outbreak. 2020 has been a historical year for all of us. A year that has taught us to value the little things in life, to never take anything for granted. I just hope and wish we all come out of this pandemic safer and stronger.

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And now coming on to the recipe I am sharing today. Instant Pot is my most loved and used kitchen appliance. I use it extensively to make Indian curries, daals, soups, rice, desserts, yogurt, meat and of course pasta. Once you make pasta in the instant pot, you will never make it any other way.  It practically makes itself and its ready sooner than the time it takes to boil the pasta. You can’t beat that. And the addition of Beets makes this not only healthy but also very pretty.

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Lets make this Instant Pot Beetroot Pasta…

A video recipe of the pasta can be found on my You Tube Channel here

Ingredients:

Penne or Rotini Pasta – 2 cups

Olive Oil – 2 Tbsp

Garlic Cloves – 2, minced

Onion – 1 small, chopped fine

Uncooked Beets – 1 large, chopped fine (about 1 cup)

Dried Italian seasoning/Herbs – 1 tsp

Salt and pepper – to taste

Butter – 1 Tbsp

Water or broth – 2 cups

Cream Cheese – 1/4 cup

Milk – 1/2 cup

Shredded Cheddar Cheese – 1/2 cup

Parsley or Basil – Chopped, for garnish

Method:

  1.  Turn your instant pot to sauté mode and wait till it displays hot. Once hot, add in the olive oil followed by the chopped garlic and onions.
  2. Sautee for about 2 minutes and add in the chopped beets. Mix well and let it cook for another few minutes.
  3. Add some water and deglaze the pan to make sure nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pot. This helps to prevent the dreaded BURN sign.
  4.  Turn off the sauté mode and add in the pasta, water, salt, pepper and the Italian seasonings. Mix everything well.
  5.  Close the lid. Make sure the sealing ring is well intact and set the valve to sealing mode. Pressure cook the pasta for 5 minutes followed by quick release.
  6.  Open the lid carefully and add in the butter, cream cheese and the milk. Give it a good stir. Set the instant pot again on sauté mode. This will help to thicken up the pasta sauce.
  7.  Finally add in the shredded cheese and give everything a good mix. Let it cook for a few minutes till you see a beautiful pink sauce coating the pasta.
  8.  Turn off the pasta and serve immediately with some chopped parsley or basil.

 

Stovetop Version:

To make this on the stovetop, Cook beets and chop them finely. Boil pasta as per instructions. In a pan, heat oil and sauté garlic and onion for a few minutes. Add in the butter, cream cheese, milk, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Once everything comes to a boil, turn down the flame and add in the chopped cooked beets. Mix everything well to form a pretty pink sauce. Finally add in the cooked pasta and mix well. Throw in the shredded cheese and stir gently until the cheese is melted and the pasta is covered in beautiful pink sauce. Turn off the heat and serve immediately with chopped fresh herbs.

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And that is how you make this pretty in pink pasta. I would love to know if you try this recipe. Thanks for stopping by.

Love,

Ritu.

 

 

 

 

 


36 Comments

Cheese stuffed turkey meatballs..A slow cooker version

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A big hello.  Hope everyone is enjoying the warmer weather and looking forward to a gorgeous summer. Unless of course if you are in India, its a little bit too hot this year, as I have heard. Hope the rains bring some much needed relief soon. As for us, we are so ready for summer. 🙂

Sorry for missing in action for so long. I have not really been cooking much these days. There is however an exciting news coming up. Watch this space for more details.

Due to short of energy and time on hand, I have been experimenting a lot with my slow cooker these days. Besides trying a lot of Indian curries, I have also made some chicken, chili, meatballs etc. in this wonderful pot and have been more than pleased. 😀

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For today’s post, I am making some cheese stuffed meatballs in my slow cooker. You can definitely bake them too. Check the notes below to know how. Without further delay, lets move on to the recipe.

Ingredients:

Ground Turkey – 1 pound (feel free to use your favorite meat)

Bread Crumbs – 1 cup

Egg – 1

Mozzarella Cheese Sticks (String Cheese) – 4 (Or use any cubed hard cheese of your choice)

Garlic – 1 tsp, minced

Italian Seasoning – 1 tbsp.

Black pepper – 1/2 tsp

Salt to taste

Marinara Sauce & Boiled Spaghetti – as needed

Chopped Parsley – for garnish

Method:

  1. Cut each cheese sticks in about 6 pieces and freeze them for about 20 minutes.
  2. In the meanwhile, take a mixing bowl and add in the ground meat, egg, bread crumbs, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Mix everything very well.
  3. Now take out the cheese from the freezer. Scoop out a little bit of this meat mixture and roll it into a ball. Now push inside a cheese cube in the center of the ball and roll it again to seal the cheese inside the meat balls. Repeat the same with all the meatballs.
  4. Grease the inside of your slow cooker and add some marinara sauce at the bottom. Now place the meatballs in a single line. Top with more marinara sauce and stack the remaining meatballs as needed. Top with some more sauce to cover the meatballs.
  5. Cook this on low for about 4 hours or on high for 2 hours. The meat should no longer be pink.
  6. Finally, serve it with some boiled spaghetti and garnish it with chopped parsley. Dig in.

Notes:

  • If you would like to bake the meatballs, just place them on a greased baking dish and bake in a preheat oven at 400 F for 20 minutes.
  • You can also make the meatballs ahead of time and freeze them. Cook them as needed.

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So here is how I made this delicious and cheesy meatballs.

Thanks for stopping by at my page. Do let me know if you try this out.

Love,

Ritu. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


39 Comments

Minestrone Soup..A healthy, winter delight

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Hello everyone…Happy New Year. I wish you guys have a great year ahead. We welcomed the new year with family and friends and it was wonderful. My little one is back to school after her holiday break and we all are slowly getting into routine. What the new year also brought for us was our first snow of the season. It was all white and beautiful and my daughter absolutely loved it. 🙂

The winter is in its full swing right now with sub zero temperatures in our part of the world. We are trying our best to enjoy the cozy nights, snow ball fights, hot chocolate and of course a warm bowl of soup. Cause hey, you can’t really change the weather, all you can do is change your attitude and enjoy what life brings to you. 🙂

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I made this hearty minestrone soup on one of these cold winter nights (Temperature 9F or -13C ) and it really lifted up our spirits. Its healthy, delicious and comforting. We relished it with some warm bread and embraced the beautiful winter night. Winter or not, this soup is delicious and can be enjoyed all year around. Lets make some…

Ingredients:

Olive Oil – 2 tbsp.

Onion – 1 medium, diced

Garlic – 4 cloves, minced

Carrots – 2 medium, diced

Celery – 2 medium, diced

Zucchini – 1 medium, diced

Chopped Spinach – 2 cups

Tomato Sauce or puree – 2 cups

Vegetable Stock – 6 cups

Boiled White or Garbanzo Beans – 1 cup, (rinse and drain if using canned)

Boiled Red Kidney Beans – 1 cup (rinse and drain if using canned)

Small Shelled pasta – 1/2 cup (Use your choice of pasta)

Salt and pepper to taste

Italian Seasoning – 2 tsp

grated cheese for garnish

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a large pot, and add in the minced garlic and onions. Let it cook for a few minutes.
  2. Add the chopped carrots, zucchini and celery and cook for about 5 minutes.
  3. Next add in the tomato puree or sauce and let it cook for another 3 minutes.
  4. Finally, mix in the vegetable stock, beans, spinach, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper and let the soup cook for at least 20 minutes, on medium flame, stirring occasionally.
  5. While the soup is simmering, cook your pasta, al-Dante. I like to cook it separately, because if you add it in the soup, the pasta ends up soaking all the liquid.
  6. Once the soup has cooked for at least 20 minutes and has thickened up to your preference, give a final taste test and mix in the cooked pasta and switch of the gas. You can also mix the cooked pasta in the soup bowl to avoid thickening of the entire soup.
  7. Garnish it with some shredded cheese and enjoy this warm bowl of goodness.

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So that is how I made this delicious soup and warmed up a very cold winter night. Do let me know if you try it out.

Thanks for stopping by.

Love,

Ritu. 🙂